Thursday, July 27, 2006

Zimbabwean exposed in British asylum racket


Dzumbira, left, seen greeting the undercover journalist

A CORRUPT Zimbabwean working as an immigration officer in the United Kingdom has been exposed by the Sun newspaper after a sting operation organised by a genuine asylum seeker and the tabloid.

Joseph Dzumbira, 35, boasted to The Sun that he has helped 200 bogus asylum seekers enter Britain for cash.

Senior Home Office worker Joseph Dzumbira bragged to an undercover reporter that he could get anyone refugee status for up to £2,000.

He agreed to provide fake documents and IDs and coach bogus asylum seekers on how to cheat the system using loopholes learned in his job.

His biggest scam is pretending people of other nationalities are “Zim” cases — Zimbabweans threatened with arrest in their homeland. He knows the Home Office will not deport people to Zimbabwe because they face torture and death at the hands of President Mugabe’s thugs.

Dzumbira has worked for seven years at the scandal-ridden Lunar House asylum HQ in Croydon, South London.

Earlier this year The Sun exposed a sex-for-visas racket at the same office.

Dzumbira — part of a gang which includes other bent immigration officers, solicitors and an ex-cop — boasted: “I believe in delivering results. There are people who can bend the rules.”

We were tipped off about Dzumbira by a disgusted asylum seeker who received huge demands for cash.

Known very well amongst the Zimbabwean community in Southend-on-Sea, Dzumbira bragged to all and sundry about what he could do for those trying to stay in the UK legally. In one instance, he hid the papers of a Zimbabwean woman seeking asylum trying to clear all the other cases so he could get an opportunity to speak with her and ask for a bribe to assist her. In another, he followed a group of former Daily News journalists from Zimbabwe who had gone to the courts to support a friend at the appeals court.

He told them the case had not been handled well by the lawyer and if they were prepared to pay he would assist them and influence the judge through his "powerful friends". They saw through him and refused to work with him.

He insisted and the group was saved by a train that arrived early when he had nipped into the toilet at Hatton Cross tube station. Since he had already taken a number of one of the journalists before they knew his intentions, Dzumbira pestered the group with phone calls soon after.

In the end they ignored his calls. He even tried to lure them into parting with their money saying not only could he help their colleague with her papers but also with mortgages because he was also linked to the housing market in the UK. But, many in Southend, which today has been abuzz with his story after the Sun exposed him, believed he was a liar who did not work with anyone in the immigration department.

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Inquiry calls over 'out of control' immigration system

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